Monday 28th November 2011 and yesterday I had set aside time to start writing about the 30 marvellous years I enjoyed as manager of the Vale U11 squad. I was to start with my very first season in charge, 1980-81, but the breaking news of Sunday 27th November was the tragic death of Gary Speed.
As members of that season’s squad will recall, Gary was a member of a very successful Deeside team which swept all before them. Deeside Primary Schools was run by the late Mr Ron Bishop, and Deeside epitomized Ron’s beliefs as to how the game of football should be played. Ron would have been so proud of Gary, for he was the ultimate footballer on and off the pitch, an inspiration during his playing career and on the brink of carrying Welsh football to new peaks with his coaching and managerial skills. On behalf of the Vale, our condolences to his family for their loss.